Work has begun on a portion of Interstate 10 to replace worn-down rubberized asphalt that has become a safety concern for motorists.

Arizona Department of Transportation crews are working to remove the unraveling surface asphalt layer on eastbound I-10 between Ruthrauff Road and Miracle Mile.

Motorists should expect minor delays during overnight work from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. until expected completion on Jan. 19. The eastbound frontage road will remain open.

The concrete road motorists will soon drive on shouldn’t worry drivers, according to ADOT spokesperson Tom Herrmann.

“People are going to be driving on the concrete surface, it’s a common surface used in many places, it’s safe, it’s reliable and drivers don’t have to worry because they’re on concrete instead of asphalt.”

Herrmann said officials noticed the problem, but the department also received calls from the public concerning safety issues related to the peeling roadway.

ADOT engineers will investigate what happened and find the best replacement possible for that section of I-10, Herrmann said. But there’s no clear answer yet.

“It could have been that the materials used in the asphalt weren’t quite up to specifications, it could be that weather was involved when we were putting (asphalt) down,” he said. “The adhesive might not have held, whether that was because the roadway wasn’t cleaned properly or maybe it’s the adhesive didn’t work properly, there are any number of reasons.”

While this section of road will be concrete soon, it doesn’t seem to be a widespread problem, according to Herrmann.

“Recently, I haven’t seen any other sections of rubberized asphalt that have had the same problems. Certainly any surface that you put down can have a problem, it can be an issue with rubberized asphalt, there could be issues with non-rubberized asphalt, but I haven’t seen one recently where we had the kinds of issues that we’re seeing on I-10 in Tucson right now.”

New crosswalk to improve student safety at Sunnyside High

A new pedestrian crossing at Sunnyside High School will improve safety for students coming to and from campus, the Tucson Department of Transportation says.

Scheduled for an unveiling on Jan. 15, the crosswalk features a rectangular, rapidly flashing beacon that is used to increase the visibility of uncontrolled marked crosswalks.

The crossing will improve the safety of students as they cross from Bilby Road, west of Campbell Avenue, to get to the school. Also, new accessible ramps, a median island refuge and pavement markings were added.

The Sunnyside Student Council led safety discussions with Tucson Vice Mayor Richard Fimbres to get the project completed. The ribbon-cutting ceremony begins at 11 a.m. at the crosswalk.

Camino de la Tierra work starting

On Jan. 14, construction crews will be working at South Camino de la Tierra for centerline realignment, curve corrections to increase super-elevation at the two curves within the corridor and shoulder widening to add paved shoulders, which is said to increase safety.

The work will be done from Camino de la Tierra, Highway Drive and Curtis Road from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and work is expected to be completed by this summer. The speed limit will be reduced to 25 mph in the work zone.

Contact Star reporter Shaq Davis at 573-4218 or sdavis@tucson.com

On Twitter: @ShaqDavis1